Practice tests are the best way to get acclimated to the timing and question formats that you'll encounter on the AP Human Geography exam. They'll also help you figure out where you need to put in additional study time to improve your scores. In this article, I'll link to all the practice tests available for AP Human Geography, including full official tests, full unofficial tests, and mini unofficial quizzes that test specific parts of the curriculum.
Official AP Human Geography Practice Tests
Official practice tests are - officially - the best materials to use in preparation for any standardized test, including AP Human Geography. You can be confident that the difficulty level of the questions is on par with what you'll see on the real test, which means you'll be able to estimate your score pretty accurately.
This is in contrast to many unofficial practice materials, which can be hit or miss regarding their predictive value for the real test. Practice tests that weren't created by the College Board may have questions that are phrased and formatted differently or are either too easy or too challenging.
Many past free-response questions for this exam are posted on the College Board site, and the course description has a set of sample multiple-choice questions. If nothing else, you can refer to them as benchmarks to make comparisons with the unofficial tests you take. They should give you a better idea of how difficult unofficial test questions are relative to those you'll see on the real exam.
Unfortunately, there is only one official released AP Human Geography exam that I can link to in this article. However, that’s not to say other more shady individuals haven’t violated these terms and posted sample tests. Google is your friend (wink wink).
Without further ado, here are the three resources I could find for official AP Human Geography questions:
2006 AP Human Geography Exam (PDF download)
This includes the entire test (both multiple-choice and free-response questions), and there’s an answer key if you scroll down to the bottom.
This includes all the free-response questions that have been asked on the AP Human Geography exam since 2001. Be aware that the scoring guidelines are only included for questions from 2004 onwards, so the first three sets of questions for 2001-2003 don’t have official answers that you can consult.
The latest course description includes 23 sample multiple-choice questions and six sample free-response questions. Free-response answer guidelines are not included, but multiple-choice solutions are.
Authenti City is a great place. The people are so honest, and their practice tests are the best you can get anywhere. Wouldn't recommend it as a vacation destination, though. You will not be able to escape from reality.
Unofficial AP Human Geography Practice Tests
There are many more unofficial AP Human Geography practice tests and quizzes available to you in various forms. These materials are useful, but you should avoid taking them completely at face value. I’ll list full practice test resources first, and then I’ll get into sites that provide short quizzes on specific topics.
Full Practice Tests
This is a full practice exam in the same format as the real AP test (multiple choice, free response, the whole package). You can choose to take it in practice mode or timed mode depending on which stage you're at in your studying. I’d recommend saving this practice test for when you get closer to the AP exam. It’s good for simulating real test conditions when you feel relatively prepared and want to assess your score level.
This is also a full practice exam in the same format as the real test. It has answer explanations, and I think the questions are solid replicas of what you’ll see on the AP exam.
Once again, this exam is in the same format as the real test. It includes both free-response and multiple-choice questions, and you'll find answer explanations at the end of the document.
This site offers four diagnostic tests for AP Human Geography with 75 questions each (multiple-choice only). The tests have automatic scoring, and each one is given a preliminary difficulty level rating. Varsity Tutors also has tons of mini practice quizzes listed by concept if you want to practice topic-specific questions, as well as flashcards that will help you learn all the terminology for this course.
Don’t forget about the practice tests that are available to you in AP Human Geography review books. Most review books offer at least two full practice tests. Read my article on the best review books for this class to get a sense of which ones fit your studying needs.
Short Quizzes on Specific Concepts and Geographic Regions
Albert.IO (formerly Learnerator) has questions on every topic covered by the course that are categorized by difficulty level. The site keeps a running tally of how many questions you’ve answered correctly in the easy, medium, and hard categories.
SoftSchools has a series of 10-question practice quizzes on each topic. They're good for brief review sessions!
Select a chapter on the left navigation bar, and you can scroll down to find a link to its corresponding multiple-choice quiz. These quizzes are helpful for review even if your class isn’t using this particular textbook.
You'll earn points for citing specific examples in your free-response answer, and many multiple-choice questions ask about particular areas of the world. This site provides fun exercises that will help you learn exactly where everything is. You can progress through tutorial, beginner and advanced levels in activities that test your knowledge of the political and geographic divisions that exist within each continent.
More of us need to take these geography quizzes so people stop coming out with depressing surveys concluding that 75 percent of Americans think Australia is in Europe. I made up that statistic, but it might as well be real.
How to Use AP Human Geography Practice Tests
Here's an overview of how you can use these practice tests for review at different stages in the school year as you get closer and closer to the AP test.
First Semester: Practice Tests as Review for In-Class Assessments
During your first semester, you won’t have gotten through enough of the curriculum to take full practice tests yet. What you can do is take shorter quizzes that are specific to the topics you’ve learned already. Make use of sites like Learnerator, Varsity Tutors, and many of the other unofficial listings that divide questions by subject. You can also practice writing answers to free-response questions that pertain to the topics your class has already covered.
Second Semester: Preparing for the AP Test
When you're midway through your second semester, you can start preparing for the AP test more directly. Take a full practice test and score it so you can get a better sense of your knowledge and abilities. You can use one of the three full practice tests listed in the unofficial test section for this step. I’d recommend saving the near-complete official practice test from 2006 until right before the AP exam so you can get the most accurate score predictions when you’re closest to the test. After you take the test, revisit all the questions where you made mistakes, and make note of their content. This will guide you in deciding which areas you need to study more and which you've already mastered.
Once you've spent a couple of hours reviewing, take another practice test to reassess your score level. If you see some improvement, you can either repeat the process and aim higher or decide you’re satisfied with your current score level. If not, you should think about what went wrong in reviewing your mistakes. Did you only look them over haphazardly? Were you in a distracting environment? Change your approach if you’re not getting the results you want!
Wait, What If Your Class Is Only One Semester?
At some schools, AP Human Geography is only a semester-long class. If that's the case for you, much of the same preparation advice still applies, but it will take place on a slightly different timeline.
If you take the class first semester, you'll have a significant chunk of time between the end of the course and the actual AP test. This can be a big advantage if you use your time wisely and avoid procrastinating (which you'll have to watch out for if you're very busy with your second-semester classes). You'll be able to start the second-semester study process outlined above as soon as you finish the class. There will be plenty of time to take practice tests after your class has covered all the material, so it will be easier to get an accurate reading on your score level before the AP test.
If you take this class second semester, the review process should be essentially the same as if it were a year-long class. The first-semester advice will apply to the first half of your second semester, and the second-semester advice will apply to the second half.
You can afford to progress at a more leisurely pace in your studying if you take the class first semester because you have a few months that you can devote to preparing for the AP test.
Official practice testing materials for AP Human Geography are somewhat scarce. You should wait to use the one full official practice test until you're closer to the AP exam and are looking for highly accurate score predictions. You can use unofficial practice tests and quizzes at any time throughout the year to practice topic-specific questions for in-class assessments and prepare for the AP test as a whole.
Be sure to reflect carefully on your answers to every practice test so you can assess where you went wrong and revisit relevant content. Practice tests should play a key role in your review for any AP test. If you treat them seriously and pay attention to what they tell you about your level of preparation, you're bound to do well on the exam!
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Samantha is a blog content writer for PrepScholar. Her goal is to help students adopt a less stressful view of standardized testing and other academic challenges through her articles. Samantha is also passionate about art and graduated with honors from Dartmouth College as a Studio Art major in 2014. In high school, she earned a 2400 on the SAT, 5's on all seven of her AP tests, and was named a National Merit Scholar.